Report: Battlefield 1 Multiplayer Is Much Smoother on PS4 Pro, Update Brought Downgrades

November 16, 2016Written by Jason Dunning

Following PlayStation 4 Pro’s announcement in September, Naughty Dog said multiplayer games will have the same frame-rate on PS4 and PS4 Pro. In the PS4 Pro FAQ from Sony, they were a little less definitive, saying Pro owners “generally” won’t have a performance advantage in online games:

Generally, no. Playtesting and balancing is up to each game developer, and while it’s true that PS4 Pro’s more powerful hardware can drive smoother or more stable frame rates in supported titles, developers have many tools and processes they can use to prevent imbalances.

In Digital Foundry’s PS4 vs PS4 Pro test, they discovered that Battlefield 1’s multiplayer on PS4 Pro “offers a tangible performance advantage over standard PS4 owners.” According to their findings, PS4 Pro gives players up to a 47% frame-rate advantage “in scenarios where the Frostbite engine is under the greatest stress,” most notably 64-player matches.

Using two copies of the game played side-by-side on PS4 Pro and PS4 in the same session, Digital Foundry found that PS4 Pro offers up to a 10-15fps advantage over PS4. For example, when the PS4 version hits 32fps, the PS4 Pro version is at 47fps. Additionally, the Pro version stays at the target 60fps more consistently.

They add:

Also interesting is more consistency in frame-times for Pro owners. Battlefield 1 is v-synced, meaning that the target frame-time is 16.7ms – 60 frames per second. However, performance drops can see 33ms or even 50ms frame-times on standard PS4 hardware – in our tests, the Pro never exceeds 33ms. In the heat of the action, PS4 Pro offers more visual feedback and crisper response, though clearly a locked 60fps is still off the table in demanding scenes.

Asked about the unfair advantage PS4 Pro owners appear to have, DICE LA Engineer Julian Manolov said, “BF1 on a Pro has been done in collaboration with Sony. We’re complying with their policies/requests.”

Following the release of Battlefield 1 update 1.04 yesterday, PS4 Pro owners reported downgrades to the frame-rate and visuals. Asked about this, Manolov said, “No idea about the PS4 Pro. I’ve been working on platform independent stuff (mostly core gameplay).”

According to Digital Foundry, update 1.04 tweaked temporal anti-aliasing, but they can confirm that the PS4 Pro enhancements weren’t disabled. “We’ve also just re-ran a small section of campaign tests and see no obvious impact to performance,” they added.

Have you played Battlefield 1 on PS4 Pro? What do you think of it?

[Source: Eurogamer, PlayStation Blog, Julian Manolov (Twitter 1, 2), PowerUp Gaming]